Authored by: Johannes Bernhard Wehr , Frederick Paxton Cardell Blamey , Neal William Menzies

Encyclopedia of Environmental Management

Print publication date:  December  2012
Online publication date:  December  2012

Print ISBN: 9781439829271
eBook ISBN: 9781351235860
Adobe ISBN:


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Aluminum (Al) is a ubiquitous light metal found in the earth's crust in aluminosilicate minerals. There is no known biological role for Al in plants, animals, or microorganisms. Aluminosilicate minerals can dissolve in acidic soils, releasing soluble trivalent Al, which is toxic in the micromolar concentration range. Soluble Al in the soil environment is strongly toxic to plants and limits plant production on acidic soils. In the aqueous environment, soluble Al is strongly toxic to fish and algae. Uptake of Al by humans from food, water, and pharmaceuticals has been implicated in some neurological diseases in humans.

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